It is never easy seeing a loved one get older. It’s even harder when you know that they are in pain from arthritis. Your once agile pup is slowing down. He can’t jump up on your lap as easily. Walks are slower and more labored. Even laying down comfortably can be a little difficult. These are all things that are hard to watch. Thankfully, there are ways to help relieve your senior dog’s arthritis pain.
- Easing their pain around the house
Use padded carpeted steps or a ramp to help them get on and off the bed or couch. A ramp can also be helpful outside if you have steps leading to the yard. Set up an extra cozy padded or therapeutic dog bed away from cold or damp drafts. Cold and damp areas make arthritis flare up and also can cause pressure-point calluses.
- Using body work
Humans aren’t the only one who enjoy a good massage. You can go to a certified canine massage therapist for a professional massage and learn a few techniques. Muscle massages stimulate blood flow to your old dog’s deteriorating muscles which helps decrease pain. Sore joints can also be soothed by warm compresses, just make sure that they aren’t too hot.
- Supplements & Pharmaceuticals
Talk to your vet about what supplements would benefit your senior dog. There are countless joint aids and supplements that promote joint and cartilage health. Because of the differences in breeds, genetics and health conditions, it’s imperative that you talk to your vet before purchasing arthritis aids. Your vet may also prescribe injections or other medicine that will help ease their pain.
No matter what age, it is important to get reasonable exercise. Maintaining mobility throughout your old dog’s life helps counteract the onset of arthritis. Don’t push older senior dogs to walk too fast or too much, but keeping up a nice stroll every day is very important. Swimming is also a very therapeutic form of exercise because there is no weight involved. Look for Certified Canine Rehab Practitioners that can help you develop a great exercise program to help get them moving safely.
There is no reason for your old dog to suffer in silence. Talk to your vet today about the best options to help relieve your senior dog’s arthritis pain.
Do you worry about leaving your senior dog behind on vacation because of his advanced age? TAILored Pet Services is here to help. We have two overnight pet sitters with medical training (Trena, Vet Technician and Kirsten, Veterinary Assistant) who will give Fido a physical assessment during each visit and alert you to any health concerns. Visit the overnight pet sitting page for more information.